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Minding minds

It is happy augury that the mental healthcare Bill, which decriminalises suicide and guarantees the right to better healthcare for people with mental illness, has been unanimously passed in the Lok Sabha. The Bill mandates that a person attempting suicide shall be presumed to be suffering from ‘severe stress’ and, therefore, shall not be tried or punished by law. It also ensures that persons with suicidal tendencies be given help and

Dope on doping

The Centre’s plan to make doping by athletes a criminal offence in sync with laws that govern the usage of narcotics is sensible and in tune with needs. That a proposed legislation to this effect is on the anvil and has been cleared by the sports ministry is a step forward. Under the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code, athletes caught doping face a four-year ban for the first offence and

Trump's troubles

The first major legislative initiative of US President Donald Trump since taking office in January — the overhaul of the country’s healthcare system — has failed abjectly with a section of his own Republican partymen ditching him in conjunction with the Democrats. The embarrassment is particularly great because it had been a major election campaign promise of the President in which he had taken on his predecessor Barack Obama in no

Flighty behaviour

The assault by a Shiv Sena Member of Parliament, Ravindra Gaikwad, of an Air India staffer Sukumar and his refusal to apologise for hitting him repeatedly with his slippers was an unpardonable act for which the MP must be punished severely. That not only Air India but four other airlines that form part of the Federation of Indian Airlines – IndiGo, Jet Airways, SpiceJet and GoAir – have decided to ban

Not bankable

Officials at the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) may be familiar with an image that is being WhatsApp-ed around lately. It says ‘If you have a gun, you can rob a bank; but if you have a bank, you can rob everyone.’ The story of banks robbing people is quite old. Banks have been known to raise deposits from trusting, unsuspecting people, then giving out loans to a close coterie

Ringing in opportunities

In what is being billed as a ‘mahagathbandhan’ (mega coalition) in the economic sphere, the London-headquartered Vodafone and Kumar Mangalam Birla-controlled Idea Cellular have announced India Inc’s biggest-ever merger making the upcoming new entity the country’s undisputed leader in telecom. With a combined subscriber base of a whopping 394 million subscribers, the new company will not only surpass the current leader Bharti Airtel’s 270 million but also occupy the number

Mr Yogi's moment

The appointment of Yogi Adityanath, the monk from Gorakhpur, as the new Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh has come as the biggest surprise of the year – so far. As if the huge majority that the Bharatiya Janata Party recorded in the recently-concluded Assembly election in UP was not enough, the decision to give the reign of power in the State to a Hindu hardliner has further deepened the mystery